While the US Women's National team was busy last night at JELD-WEN Field tallying up 5 goals in their win over the Republic of Ireland, the US U-17's have been busy this week at the Nike International Friendlies in Florida.
Yesterday, the Yanks played to a thrilling 4-4 draw against Brazil and Timbers U-16 midfielder Rubio Rubin--who's been training at the US U-17 Residency Program--was particularly busy with two goals and two assists.
Backheels, throughballs and more. Rubio was busy.
The opening matches of the 2012 NCAA College Cup tournament got underway today--Michigan State beat Cleveland State 2-1 while Virginia downed Lafayette 1-0--and there are numerous teams in the full field of 48 that are the beloved alma maters of Portland Timbers players:
Eric Alexander - Indiana University with the No. 16 seed
Freddie Braun - Louisville with the No. 10 seed
Bright Dike - Notre Dame with the No. 1 seed
David Horst - Old Dominion
Andrew Jean-Baptiste - UConn with the No. 4 seed
Jack Jewsbury - Saint Louis University with the No. 8 seed
Kosuke Kimura - Western Illinois
Darlington Nagbe - Univ. of Akron with the No. 5 seed (more on that in a bit)
Brent Richards - Univ. of Washington
Chris Taylor - Univ. of Tulsa with the No. 11 seed
Rodney Wallace - Univ. of Maryland with the No. 2 seed
Clearly, the college game is still churning out talent.
But in that mix of seeds, the placement of Akron at No. 5 did leave some scratching their heads. Future Portland Timbers head coach Caleb Porter's Zips finished ranked No. 1 on numerous national polls and yet still missed out on a Top 4 seed. While they will host their first match and possibly second, to get to the final four, they'll have to go on the road--most likely against UConn. Their seeding has drawn some questions--most noticably from the Akron Beacon Journal.
While Porter was a bit "ticked off," he's focused on winning the whole thing,“Once that wears off though, it is back to business. For me it comes down to we have to win five games to win the national championship. It just so happens the road could be a little tougher.”
(The initial post listed 10 mistakenly omitting Eric Alexander's Indiana. Thanks to @IUMensSoccer for the correction.)
Will Bright Dike make his international debut tomorrow in Nigeria's friendly against Venezuela at Marlins Park in Miami? Watch the match online at ESPN3.com (4:55pm PT--certain cable subscriptions required) to find out.
Can't wait till then? Then be up and at 'em early tomorrow to watch the USMNT take on Russia on ESPN2 (7am PT). You can also watch the match stream on ESPN3.com. In the meantime, check out this USsoccer.com piece on Dutch-based American forward Jozy Altidore who made his way back into Jurgen Klinsmann's side for this upcoming friendly:
Timbers U-16 Academy forward Rubio Rubin has been busy. Already named the No. 1 U.S. Player in the Class of 2014 by TopDrawerSoccer.com, he's also been traveling the world playing with the US U-17 national team. With eight goals for the US so far in 2012, the Beaverton, OR native was recently nominated for U.S. Soccer's Young Male Athlete of the Year.
Though Rubio is up against some stiff competition that includes USMNT senior squad member Terrence Boyd--who's on the roster for tomorrow's friendly against Russia (7am PT on ESPN2 & ESPN3.com)--the honor is controlled via fan voting.
What are you waiting for? Get voting for Rubin!
You may recognize the voice of Brian Dunseth as it has become fairly ubiquitous across the American soccer spectrum. A soccer analyst on NBC Sports, Fox Soccer—often paired with our very own John Strong—as well as on Real Salt Lake and FC Dallas games, Dunseth has become a keen observer of Major League Soccer which should come as little surprise given his long playing career in MLS.
The first ever signing to the Project 40 initiative in 1997—now more commonly known as Generation adidas—Dunseth went on to play for the New England Revolution, Miami Fusion, Columbus Crew, Dallas Burn, and Real Salt Lake. After his playing career ended, Dunseth got into broadcasting but also teamed up with his old college teammate from Cal State Fullerton, Ben Hooper, to start a clothing company called Bumpy Pitch that bridges soccer, culture, history, and style. That same theme led their foray into an online “magazine” of sorts called The Original Winger that collects stories about soccer, shoes, watches, fashion, movies, music, and more.
But Dunseth also has a unique affinity to Portland. In 2000, he was the captain of a loaded US Olympic U-23s team that featured the likes of Frankie Hejduk, Ben Olsen, Conor Casey, Danny Califf and Landon Donovan as well as Timbers Alumni Ambassador Adin Brown. The head coach of that team was none other than Timbers legend Clive Charles who had a defining impact on Dunseth as a player and as a person.
In this episode of the Backcut, we talk about soccer in Portland, the influence of Charles both on a personal level and on American soccer, and much more. It’s an illuminating and emotional conversation.
The Backcut Podcast sits at the intersection of Timbers, soccer & culture to explore the unique elements of the beautiful game. You can subscribe to The Backcut on iTunes in the same feed as the Talk Timbers podcast.
The trio will be running a special presentation as one of numerous events connected to The Body Beautiful in Ancient Greece, an exhibition of artifacts celebrating the human form dating back to the second millennium BC which are all part of the collection of the British Museum in London. Attendees will have the opportunity to participate in various activities, such as creating mythic monsters, designing vases and Greek-style puppets.
Mwanga, Timber Joey and Thompson will talk about the importance of keeping their own bodies healthy through exercise and a healthy diet. The presentation will run from 2 until 2:30pm with an autograph session to follow until 3pm.
Free Family Day runs from noon until 5 p.m. at the Portland Art Museum located at 1219 SW Park Avenue. For more information, visit www.pam.org or call 503.226.2811.
As the 2012 Timbers season comes to a close as well as the #SoccerKicksCancer Breast Cancer Awarness campaign for October, we have on our hands a pair of Nagbe's Golden Boots. No, not those golden boots (FF to 1:00 mark).
These Golden Boots F-50 adiZeros from adidas:
Notice the special autograph. Nagbe was one of only five MLS players invited by adidas to utilize their miadidas custom shoe tool to design a special pair of boots to help promote Breast Cancer Awareness month for MLS.
And now you can enter for a chance to get your hands on them. All you have to do is follow @PTStandTogether on Twitter and re-Tweet this message to enter. One randomly chosen RT will win a pair. Click here for full contest rules.
Want to make your own pair? Watch this video of Nagbe putting his together then visit miadidas.
Much like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, the Timbers’ Saturday regular season finale against the San Jose Earthquakes (3:30pm PT, NBC Sports Network, 101.1 FM KXL / La Pantera 940) will have an element of golden tickets.
In recognition of Fan Appreciation Day, the first 7,000 fans into the stadium will receive the specially designed poster seen above. At 24”x36”, it’s big.
Thirty of said posters will have the aforementioned special golden tickets that will be granting a plethora of special Timbers items including autographed jerseys, game-worn boots of Timbers players, gift certificates, signed soccer balls and more.
Moreover, the adidas Timbers Team Store will be having a huge End of Season Fan Appreciation Sale with steep discounts on merchandise, hats, jerseys and more.
The Sale applies to over half of our store’s inventory and offers fans four discounted price tiers of $5, $10, $20 & $40 with discounts ranging from 25-85% off standard retail prices. Moreover, Timbers Season Ticket Holders will be able to use their benefit card to add their discount onto any clearance merchandise.
But the sale is limited. Things get rolling tomorrow at the team store at JELD-WEN Field (open on non-match days Mon-Sat 11a-5p), online at shop.portlandtimbers.com, and run through Halloween.
So between the poster, golden tickets, and screaming deals, there’s a little something for everyone.
Chris Seitz with the Timbers in 2009 - Photo by Craig Mitchelldyer
What would you do if your name came up as a probable bone marrow donor for a person you've never met and who desperately needs it to save their life?
In 2009, Seitz--then a member of Real Salt Lake--registered himself as a potential bone marrow donor as a show of solidarity with teammate Andy Williams. Williams' wife that season had been diagnosed with leukemia and many teammates went through the process of getting swabbed to put their names into a national database of donors. Three years later, now a member of FC Dallas, Seitz gets an email in the middle of the 2012 season saying he could be a match. Does he stay with the team? Does he put everything on hold? ESPN.com tells the story:
"I would look back at it and shoot myself in the foot if I didn't do it," Seitz said. "I'd always have questions about myself, about who I am. It just would have bothered me. If someone had the chance to do it to help me or [my wife] Kate, I'd beg them to do it. And it had just happened in my family. I saw it as my chance to give something back."
USL Timbers fans may remember Seitz donning the Timbers crest for two games during that 2009 season. After injuries knocked out the team's 'keepers, Seitz came on loan from RSL for two games against the Carolina Railhawks. He posted a win and a draw with two shutouts during his brief spell here.
Read the article and watch the incredibly personal video diary, then learn more about how you can be a donor at GetSwabbed.org or Be The Match. FCDallas.com also has a story about how he continues to work in his rehab from the bone marrow harvesting procedure and how he hopes to someday meet the bone marrow recipient.
Leading college and youth soccer website TopDrawerSoccer.com recently ranked the Top 150 players from the class of 2014. Number One on the list? Timbers U-16 Academy forward Rubio Rubin.
The Beaverton native is currently playing with the U.S. U-17 National Team and most recently helped the side to a 3-1 win over Uruguay in a friendly in Buenos Aires on Sunday. Rubin has scored in three of his last six appearances with the U.S. U-17s and was selected to a 20-man roster to compete in the Four-Nations Cup in Buenos Aires this week. The match against Uruguay was one of two friendlies bookending the tournament.
For the first year of the Timbers Academy, this is promising development.